To coin a phrase, that one would probably be it for me at the moment! Exams finished last Friday. My final undergraduate exams to be precise. I went through an odd mixture of relief and apathy after the final one. There was no great elation, third years know the drill pretty well. Finish the last exam and head straight to the Union for drinks, lose the next few days in a oblivion occasionally waking up in the middle of the night in a fit of panic, still in exam mode.
So now for me, all I have left is the final year undergraduate project which is based at Imperial’s other campus Silwood Park.
I moved to Silwood on Tuesday…well actually I didn’t, not properly anyway. I moved my bedding and crockery on the train from my flat in Shepherds Bush. I met up with two other biology friends on the way. On departing the train from Sunningdale station, the nearest in relation to the campus, we decided to walk the rest of the way there. This was a mistake. Silwood has hills and fast roads. By the third hill, dragging suitcases and bags behind us we realised that perhaps a taxi would have been better. Luckily since I only had half the amount I was supposed to bring, the distance wasn’t that bad but still…
I brought the rest of my stuff early in the morning today and made sure to get a taxi from the station to the campus. The campus is totally different to the London based campus. For one thing, there are plants, lots of them, trees too! The campus is a lot smaller, but more spread out than the London campus. The houses of residence are fairly clustered together and the atmosphere is a lot calmer and laid back than in London. My room is in Brian Flowers hall on the ground floor and looks like any standard hall room with a desk, wardrobe, chair and bed etc.
I went food shopping today with a bunch of other biologists. The nearest supermarket is Waitrose which is next to Sunningdale station, so again half an hours walk from the campus. Waitrose is ok I guess. A little pricey for a general student budget in my opinion, but with Tescos being a significant drive away, it won out for this weeks shop. Other students we met on campus told us that there is a mini-bus every Monday and Wednesday that is driven by the students to Tescos; this may be something I may have to check out in the six weeks that I am here . My all consuming feeling with regards to shopping is that a car would probably be a good choice if I was staying here for any length of time, although I realise that I am slightly biased on this view having lived in London for three years where public transport (despite numerous derogatory comments regarding it in my facebook status) is actually as easy as flicking a light switch. You really appreciate london buses and tubes when you move to the countryside. Then again I probably need the exercise! Trains run every half an hour from Sunningdale train station to London Waterloo and you can change at Richmond for the district line for places such as Hammersmith and South Kensington.
So what is my dissertation/final project all about? (Skip this paragraph if you don’t like ecology!) Mainly about getting absolutely covered in caterpillars…that little green caterpillar on my work in my last post was an omen! I’m looking at Winter moth caterpillars on Sycamore trees and counting them. Today was windy and all the caterpillars started falling off the trees onto me! Good thing I’m not counting spiders! This is a practical project. I like practical projects in that it’s quite nice to get out and about in the countryside and get out in the field and actually look at interactions first-hand.
I stupidly left my phone at my flat in Shepherds bush when setting off today. Logistically this is proving interesting whilst out here. There are about 15 of us biologists all spread out amongst the various laboratories with most of us spread out in the halls too. Meeting up for lunch or dinner is a bit of a challenge. Since I can’t text anyone to find out where they are, I rely on chance to find people. My phone is also my alarm clock as well Talk about going back to basics!
I shall try to keep my blog updated for these six weeks with my fun and frolics whilst out here, hopefully with some pictures as well.
Your friendly caterpillar covered blogger!